Vasanello is a small town between the Tiber and the hills of Monte Cimino in the Province of Viterbo. The surrounding area is home to many man-made caves, ancient walls and tombs dating back to the Etruscan era. The main attractions are the Cathedral, the San Salvatore Church and the Orsini Castle.
Vasanello City Guide
The address of the town hall is Via Roma, 30 – 01030 Vasanello (tel. +39 076140891). The ZIP code is 01030 and the area code is 0761. The town has just over four thousand inhabitants. There is no tourist office.
By car/public transportation
By car: The town is located along the Strada Provinciale SP30. From Rome the quickest way is the A1 to Orte and then the SP30. From Viterbo it is easiest to follow the SS675 until just before Orte and then take the SP30 in southern direction.
Public transportation: The nearest train station is in Vignanello, but from Rome it is most convenient to take the train to Orte. From here there is a regular Cotral bus service to Vasanello. From Viterbo the bus service is not very frequent.
Like most of the towns in the area, Vasanello has ancient origins, as evidenced by the many archaeological sites. During much of the Middle Ages it was the property of the church and then for centuries a plaything of the various noble families who disputed each other’s control of the area. Since 1949 it has existed under its present name.
Vasanello was probably founded by the Etruscans. It is thought to have been built on the site where the settlement of Castrum Aderinum used to be.
Near the borough of Campomorto, ruins of an ancient Etruscan necropolis (around the 6th century BC) can still be seen.
From the time the Via Amerino was constructed, the city experienced a boom period.
From the year 727 it was owned by the church, which had received Vasanello as a gift from the king of the Longobards, Liutprando.
Churches built during the Middle Ages are the San Salvatore Church, for the construction of which stones from the consular road Via Amerina were used, and the Santa Maria Assunta Church. The Santa Maria delle Grazie Church boasts frescoes by il Pastura. The San Lando Church is located in the countryside.
In the 13th century the city was conquered by the Orsini.
After being reconquered by the papal troops, a rebellion took place in 1375, which did not last more than two years, however.
In the 16th century the Castello Orsini was built. An earlier, 13th century construction was used as the foundation.
Hereafter the Tomacelli, the Colonna, the Della Rovere (who had received the town from Pope Julius II as a bridal gift when Nicola della Rovere married Laura Orsini) and the Barberini-Sciarra successively took control of the fief. The latter family owned Vasanello until the end of the 19th century.
The original name was Basanello, a corruption of the Latin Bassius, with the addition of -anus (“belonging to”).
Only since 1949 has the official name been Vasanello.
What to see
For a small town, Vasanello is quite rich in tourist attractions. The biggest attractions are the Orsini Castle and the Santa Maria Assunta Cathedral, which built in the 11th century on top of an ancient Roman temple. Other interesting churches are the San Salvatore Church, the San Lanno Church and the Madonna delle Grazie Abbey. The Palazzo Comunale houses a Museo Civico.
Events and festivals
No special events are known.